Kabwe soldier’s murder trial begins


TRIAL in a case in which a Kabwe-based soldier is accused of killing his wife commenced yesterday with a witness testifying that the deceased was found with her tongue protruding while white foam came out of her nostrils.

Sydney Lungu, 40,  of Chimanimani Township, testified before Kabwe  High Court judge Elita Mwikisa that he was shocked to learn that Rachael Banda who he last saw the previous night had died.

This is in a case in which Sydney Mumba, a private in the Zambia Army, is on unknown dates but between March 5 and 6, 2013 suspected to have murdered Ms Banda,  24, contrary to section 200 Cap 87 of the Laws of Zambia, a charge he denied.

But Mr Lungu testified before Ms Justice Mwikisa that on March 5, 2013, the deceased arrived back from Lusaka where she had gone for a funeral and went to collect keys from her friends who at the time were at a drinking place in Ngungu Township.

He narrated that while at the drinking place, Ms Banda was informed by the accused person that he had been admitted to Ngungu Clinic, but after checking at the clinic the information was found to be false.

Mr Lungu explained that Mumba later called his wife, who was in the company of one Helen and Rita, and told her that he was not at the clinic. They later met with him along the road.

Mr Lungu said they all parted company and that the deceased, who was her neighbour in Chimanimani, followed behind with Mumba while Rita and Helen went to their home.

He said the following morning, he was surprised to see Ms Banda’s house locked from the outside with a lock, but he went away to visit his sister.

Mr Lungu narrated that he later received a forwarded text message from Ms Banda’s mobile phone advising him to go to her house together with Helen to collect some items left on the bed.

He said after seeing the text message he did not go immediately but later on arrival at his home, he was shocked to find a lot of  people and learnt that Ms Banda died.

Mr Lungu said the matter was reported to the police.

He said he saw Ms Banda’s tongue protruding with white foam on her nostrils.

Another witness, James Phiri, aged 50, told the court that he received a call from Ms Banda’s mother asking him to confirm reports that her daughter had been killed.

Mr Phiri said after inquiring from the police, he learnt that the report

 was  true.

Trial continues.